EU Directive on re-use of Public Sector Information

10 11 2009

There is a rather dull but potentially quite important document, the EU Directive on the re-use of public sector information.

Ch. II Ar. 4
‘Public sector bodies shall, through electronic means where possible and appropriate, process requests for re-use and shall make the document available for re-use to the applicant or, if a licence is needed, finalise the licence offer to the applicant within a reasonable time that is consistent with the time frames laid down for the processing of requests for access to documents.’

Ch. II Ar.5
‘On the basis of this Directive, public sector bodies cannot be required to continue the production of a certain type of documents with a view to the re-use of such documents by a private or public sector organisation.’

i.e. You have to do the hard work yourself. This directive gives EU officials the right to fail to produce documentation in the form citizens would like it, if they deem it an ‘unreasonable’ use of their time.

One of the most important features of the post-bureaucratic age is that data is made available at the earliest possible time, in the most convenient possible format. This should be undertaken at the expense of the state, as part of its fundamental accountability to citizens.

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